On the ninth day of Navratri, a heartfelt tradition known as Nav Kanya Pujan takes center stage. This beautiful ritual involves the worship of nine young girls, symbolizing the purity and innocence of Devi Durga. Legend holds that it was on this auspicious day that Devi Durga emerged victorious against a formidable demon. In reverence to this triumph, people partake in Nav Kanya Pujan, an act of devotion that honors the divine feminine in her purest form.
The Significance of Nav Kanya Pujan
During Navratri, families invite nine young girls below the age of 13 to their homes and worship them as embodiments of the nine goddesses or nine manifestations of Goddess Shakti. This age-old tradition, known as Nav Kanya Puja, is highly regarded for its ability to please Goddess Durga. The belief behind this tradition is that the feminine gender represents the primordial energy of creation and these girls represent the very first force that inspired the creation of the universe and the gods, making them deserving of utmost respect and admiration.
During Kanya Puja, the family washes the girls’ feet, ties a red mauli on their hands, and applies a tilak on their forehead. Then, they worship and offer prasadam, including puri, dry black chana, and halwa. Some families also invite and worship a boy of the same age as the form of Bhairava (Shiva). The coconut kept at the altar is cracked open and shared as prasadam among the girls.
This ceremony, also known as Maha Ashtami Kumari Puja, holds great significance in the Navratri festivities. Performing Kanya Puja is believed to help one gain the blessings of Goddess Durga and acknowledge the feminine power bestowed in the female child. Additionally, all the offerings made to the goddess during the nine days are offered to the young girls, making this ceremony an important aspect of Navratri celebration.
Nav Kanya Pujan holds profound significance in Hindu culture. The nine young girls represent the nine forms of goddesses or divine shaktis, and their presence during the puja symbolizes purity and innocence. By honoring these young girls, devotees seek blessings, good fortune, insight, and knowledge. The act of washing the girls’ feet, feeding them, and offering them new clothes is a symbol of devotion, respect, and a recognition of the divine in the girl child.
Devi Mahamaya: The Divine Feminine
In Nav Kanya Pujan, women and girl children hold a special place. Women are considered reflections of Devi Mahamaya, the divine feminine energy, and girl children are seen as the epitome of innocence. This puja is a nod to the power and grace inherent in the feminine aspect of divinity. It is a reminder of the importance of nurturing and cherishing the girl child and recognizing her as a manifestation of the divine.
Benefits of Nav Kanya Pujan
Participating in Nav Kanya Pujan offers several spiritual benefits:
Blessings and Good Fortune
Seeking the blessings of the young girls is believed to bring good fortune, prosperity, and positive energy into one’s life and home.
Insight and Knowledge
By honoring the divine feminine and the purity within, devotees hope to gain insight, wisdom, and spiritual growth.
Nav Kanya Pujan allows individuals to connect with the divine in a meaningful way, fostering a sense of spiritual fulfillment and devotion.
Organizing Nav Kanya Pujan at Home
To perform Nav Kanya Pujan at home, here are some essential steps:
- Inviting the Nine Young Girls: Invite nine young girls to your home or a designated sacred space.
- Prepare a Clean and Sacred Space: Cleanse and purify the space where the puja will take place. Create an altar with images or idols of Devi Durga and arrange it with flowers, incense, and a lamp.
- Offerings: Prepare offerings such as fruits, sweets, new clothes, and gifts for the young girls.
- Rituals: Follow the traditional rituals, which typically involve washing the feet of the girls, applying tilak (sacred mark) on their foreheads, offering them prasad (blessed food), and giving them new clothes.
- Prayers and Mantras: Recite prayers and mantras dedicated to Devi Durga during the puja.
- Distribution of Prasad: After the puja, distribute prasad to the young girls and seek their blessings.
Nav Kanya Pujan is a beautiful way to connect with the divine feminine and instill a sense of purity, innocence, and reverence in our lives. By honoring the girl child, we pay homage to the embodiment of Devi Durga’s divine energy and invite her blessings into our homes and hearts.
Nav Kanya Puja at Rudralife
In recognition of this tradition, on the ninth day of Navratri, Rudralife will be organizing a Nav Kanya Puja. Women, being reflections of Devi Mahamaya, hold a special place in the festival, with girl children seen as the epitome of innocence and purity. By participating in this Puja, one can seek blessings of devi Durga for good fortune, insight, knowledge and courage.
Join us for this auspicious occasion on 23rd of October at 12:35 P.M. at Rudralife. Experience the blessings of Devi Durga and seek her wisdom and guidance.
To register for Nav Kanya Pujan, click here.